Battle of the Bulge - Ardennes Northern Shoulder

What do we know about the King Tiger tank?  It was one that was feared by the Allies.  "It was a formidable machine, in every respect."

Although a powerful tank, the King Tiger had problems in a place like the Ardennes Forest.  At nearly 65 tons, its size was a drawback on restricted roads.  "It makes a mess," as it goes through wooded and hilly terrain.  The Ardennes - especially its Northern Shoulder - is wooded and hilly.

During the Battle of the Bulge, the tank was still new and had technical problems.  Many had to be abandoned.  Because tanks had trouble making their way, the attack could not continue in Hitler's preferred "Blitzkrieg" style. 

The attack was also impeded by the types of soldiers then fighting for the Reich.  They were not crack troops, and many were not properly trained.  Some of the tank operators were highly inexperienced, and the tanks themselves were chronically low on fuel.

Worse for Germany, the army's commanders were no longer free to make their own decisions (as they had been during the early part of the war).  By December of 1944, Hitler was exercising personal control on many levels, thereby causing his commanders to fear how their leader would view their actions.

German troops - for these, and other, reasons - began to lose the momentum they had initially gained during the opening rounds of their surprise attack.  (The link is an official U.S. Army slideshow.)

See, also:

Battle of the Bulge - Ardennes Offensive

Battle of the Bulge - Mass Surrender

Battle of the Bulge - The German Tiger II Tanks

Bastogne Relieved - Hitler Loses the Ardennes Offensive

Battle of the Bulge - Historic Footage

Media Credits

Video clip from the series Battlefield Detectives, Season 3, Episode 1 - "The Battle of the Bulge."  Original air date:  November 14, 2005.  Copyright, A&E, all rights reserved.  Clip provided here as fair use for educational purposes and to acquaint new viewers with the series. Online, courtesy the History Channel and YouTube.

James Millar
David Wright

Keith Farrell
James Millar



To cite this story (For MLA citation guidance see easybib or OWL ):

"Battle of the Bulge - Ardennes Northern Shoulder" AwesomeStories.com. Oct 07, 2013. Dec 11, 2019.
Awesome Stories Silver or Gold Membership Required
Awesome Stories Silver or Gold Membership Required
Show tooltips